So by now loyal readers of this blog are well-aquainted with my 2008 Beer Quest. I'm well into the 200's (my original goal was a mere 100 different kinds of beers in 2008).
So while I've been logging my beers on this blog (look to the right), I have offered precious few beer reviews and advice. But it's a new season which means this is the perfect time to give some winter beer reviews!
I'll start out with a previous favorite, Summit Winter Ale. This caramelly goodness was perhaps my favorite winter beer of this past winter. However, Summit changes the recipe every year, which I think is a neat idea, but their Winter Ale 2008 has fallen flat. It's a boring beer with no seasonal flavor. It's no more exciting than their Extra Pale Ale. While I like their EPA (and I find Winter Ale 2008 drinkable), it is a major letdown from last year's recipe. Anyone got a Summit Winter leftover from last year???
Next up, 2 Below from New Belgian Brewery. Pretty good, rich, caramelly beer. Everything from New Belgian is fantastic, so drink up!
Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale: mmm.... seasonal flavors combined with Cascade Hops (as well as other varieties). Tis the season! (I drank a bunch of this Election Night, Celebration indeed!)
Anchor Steam Old Foghorn Barleywine Style Ale: I just polished one of these off which inspired this post, so obviously it's pretty darn tasty. Tons of alcohol, Cascade hops, and a phenomenal "mouth-feel". It's like drinking Christmas Beer Syrup. This is definitely a one-at-a-time beer.
And finally, my new favorite winter beer:
Bell's Hell Hath No Fury Ale. Caramel, more caramel with a dash of caramel. Wow, this is Summit Winter from last year taken to the logical extreme. While the $15/6-pack price should take this down a few notches (due to my cheap-ass leanings), this is one of the best beers I've ever had and it's worth every penny. It can be found at my new favorite beer store, the Four Firkins in St. Louis Park.
Enjoy the Christmas Hops!